Sexual harassment is one of the most unfortunate and damaging forms of abuse that can occur in any work environment. It can have lasting effects that leave emotional scars that will not easily heal. Therefore, it is important that everyone be fully aware of what sexual harassment is, how it effects its victims, and how it should be handled in the workplace.
Any unwanted sexual advancements between to employees or an employee and their boss can be constituted as sexual harassment. Some examples of an unwanted sexual advance might include:
- A sexual joke
- Asking for a date
- Asking personal sexual or romantic questions
- Requesting or offering sexual favors
When those advances are laid out as part of a form of blackmail, a threat, or as a term of employment, that is considered to be sexual harassment as well. These advances are wildly inappropriate and should never be allowed in any workplace.
Sexual harassment can have a wide array of effects on those that are subjected to it at work. Some of those effects include, but are not limited to:
- Low self-esteem/li>
- Depression or feelings of sadness
- Feelings of self-doubt
- Feelings of nervousness or fear
- Feelings of self-blame
Unfortunately, more often than not, workplace sexual harassment goes unreported because the victim is too afraid to report the abuse that they have been undergoing. Usually, they fear that they will face retaliation for reporting the unwanted advances.
If you have been approached with one or multiple unwanted advances and sexual harassment at work, it is critical that you report it. Firstly, understand that it is never okay for anyone to make you feel uncomfortable or threatened at work. But you also need to understand that the perpetrator is likely harassing others as well, and by reporting your abuse, you could be saving others as well.
Most people do not feel uncomfortable reporting sexual harassment to anyone at work. That is very understandable. That is why a qualified, professional employment attorney offers a great and safe opportunity for you to seek assistance with the harassment you are facing at work. An employment attorney can advise and assist you in protecting your rights and seeking any damages that you may be entitled to as a result.
In some cases, you may even have the opportunity to sue your employer for allowing or perpetrating sexual harassment. If you even suspect that the treatment you have received is inappropriate, you should consult with an employment attorney because it is always better to be safe than to be sorry.